Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Library Gyro

On my way to work today, I stopped in at the new Pita Pit that opened up on PSU campus to grab some lunch before heading up the hill.

As I was waiting for my lamb to grill, the guy behind the counter asked how my day was going and if I was heading to work or school, one thing lead to another and we starting talking about library school, to which he says "Oh, I love books...."

Sigh.

I didn't want to get into the whole conversation, but as he put together my pita, I quickly said that librarians don't deal with books any more, we deal with information. He looked a bit confused, so I threw out a line about information technology and databases, which he understood. I thanked him for the food and headed out the door.

As I come to the end of my first semester, I now realize that librarianship isn't necessarily about books, and its not necessarily about databases and websites, either (although they both are part of the job). Librarianship is about how we can best meet individual's needs. You never know what questions patrons might ask or advice they need. Although I work in a medical library, a lot of the best questions have nothing to do with medicine. In the past week, at the circulation desk, we've had patrons ask about formatting pictures for power point presentations, how to download and open adobe files, even bus options to get out the Oregon Coast. We literally deal with it all. And there is nothing more satisfying then helping some one find the answer they need...

And the pita was delicious, by the way. Although, for Portland residents reading this, The Pita Pit on SW 10th remains the superior Pita Pit.

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